This healthy banana bread stays moist and actually tastes good! This recipe has lower sugar, healthier fats, and adds whole grains. For tips on making this gluten-free or vegan, check the notes section below. A note on pan size: We use a 8 1/2- by 4 1/2-inch loaf pan; if you only have a 9- by 5-inch pan, start checking for doneness 5 to 10 minutes earlier.
3/4 cup (95 grams) all-purpose flour
3/4 cup (95 grams) whole wheat flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2 large bananas, heavily speckled or even black bananas are best, about 1 cup mashed
5 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil or substitute melted coconut oil
1 tablespoon molasses
1/3 cup (65 grams) sugar
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon lemon zest
2 tablespoons lemon juice
Center a rack in the oven and heat to 350 degrees F. Line an 8 1/2-inch-by-4 1/2-inch loaf pan with parchment paper and lightly grease. Place the loaf pan on an insulated baking sheet or on two regular baking sheets stacked on top of the other.
Whisk the flours, baking soda, salt and cinnamon together, set aside. In the bottom of a medium bowl, mash bananas into a chunky paste. Whisk the olive oil, molasses, sugar, eggs, lemon zest, lemon juice, and the vanilla into the bananas until blended.
Switch to a large rubber spatula. Scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl then add the dry ingredients in 3 parts, stirring gently until they disappear and the batter is smooth.
Pour batter into the pan and smooth the top. Bake 40 to 65 minutes, or until a knife inserted into the center of the bread comes out clean. After 30 minutes in the oven, check the bread for color. If it looks like it is browning too quickly, loosely cover with aluminum foil.
When the bread is done, transfer it, in the pan, to a wire rack to cool for 5 minutes. Unmold the bread and place right side up on the rack. Cool completely.